Computers bring net benefits to
give school region’s best results top spot

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PUPILS who were the first at their school to take part in a pilot project working on netbooks just before their GCSE years have gone on to achieve Yorkshire’s best exam results.

Skipton Girls’ High School was ranked highest in the region with 100 per cent of pupils achieving five A* to C grades including English and maths in 2012.

It was one of three schools in Yorkshire to achieve this but was ranked highest in the tables published yesterday as its students had the highest average GCSE point score.

Skipton Girls’ High was ranked sixth best nationally. Selective grammar schools dominated the top of the table with Crossley Heath in Halifax ranked second highest in Yorkshire and Heckmondwike and North Halifax Grammar also in the top five. The independent Hymers College was ranked third highest in the region.

Skipton Girls’ executive head teacher Jan Renou said: “We are delighted for our girls – gaining Olympic individual results along with new records for the school. Working collaboratively with students’ own imaginative ideas and commitment we’re able to develop a creative and innovative approach to teaching and learning. From their time in year nine onwards, aged 14, this year group were the first to pilot news ways of working with netbooks.

“The key factor is not the computers – however useful – but our supporting infrastructure, the quality of materials developed for the school’s virtual learning environment, the enthusiastic engagement of staff, innovative practice and the collaborative approach to learning all these things allow.”

Students Hanna Fitzsimmonds and Gabrielle Snowden, who are now in the school’s sixth form, said: “It was such a good outcome from such a small change, using new technology as a tool for students to work with teachers to change how we learn.

“This has led to a new era in teaching and learning in our school and we are pleased it has produced some of our best results.

“To have been two of the pioneering students to utilise technology to develop learning in new ways was a brilliant experience.

“We feel very lucky to have been part of such a change in the school and we aim to continue working with our teachers - breaking the boundaries in teaching and learning.”